WelCom News
A newspaper for the Wellington and Palmerston North Catholic Dioceses

An everyday retreat

Cecily McNeill

Newtown retreatants in Daily Life went to a wedding recently to get to know better the man of their dreams.

Some 22 people from St Anne’s parish gathered on a Sunday night in March to share what they most wanted out of the five-day retreat, and to ponder the story of the wedding feast at Cana [Jn 2].

They were invited to picture themselves at the wedding, as guest, servant or onlooker. What happened? How did they feel?

The five people on this Retreat in Daily Life team: Sr Anne Powell rc from the Cenacle, Fr Bryan Montgomery sm, Sr Sheila McGrath dolc, Sr Judith Moroney rsm, and Sr Merle Hiscock rndm, each accompanied retreatants whom they guided in their personal prayer journeys in half-hour conversations each day.

Retreatants were also encouraged to spend half an hour in prayer each day at a place and time of their own choice. Some returned to the wedding at Cana and discovered more spiritual riches. Others prayed with the readings from the liturgical calendar or were led to another story from the gospels.

The week finished with a gathering where retreatants shared something of their retreat journey.

Fr Montgomery and Sr Anne Powell began the Retreats in Daily Life in Wellington 12 years ago. They are based on the Ignatian model of prayer as an integral part of daily life. The team is available for parishes or school staff each year and report that, as the model of this retreat becomes more widely known, growing numbers of people are participating.